Forest keeper by Oksana Kerro (freelance concept artist and illustrator)

Oksana Kerro wrote:

One day in the mountains where lived fierce grolls broke out a terrible famine. One of the tribes came down into the thick swampy forest for the first time searching for food.

Some grolls were very fond of soft ground and a warm climate, and they did not want to go back when the hard times passed.

Songs of trees replaced the roar of native mountains for them and they began to call themselves Yolu, “tree shepherds.” Their bodies and souls changed over the centuries, Yolu lost their ferocity, they became wiser and calmer, the first druids appeared among them.

Most capable Yolu became the druids, who knew how to listen to the forest song especially attentively and save it in memory. After the ceremony they became keepers and were dedicated to the service forever. With age, they overgrew with moss, shoots and lichens, becoming home to other creatures. Souls of Yolu druids did not die, they fell asleep in the bodies which turned into trees, and they still continue to protect the forest.